In the face of dramatic changes in society, growing unemployment, and
cultural disruption, citizens have suddenly become responsive to politicians
that raise issues that traditional political parties have downplayed.

     In
the aftermath of the victory of Trump and Brexit, as well as the rising power of
the Front National in France and Widers in the Netherlands, there is not doubt
about the importance of political populism. Additionally, we witnessed how less
radical politicians increasingly used elements of populists’ discourse. 

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Nevertheless, the growing body of
literature about political populism do not state a universal definition. Indeed,
there is a large debate over the understanding of political populism
phenomenon, because it can manifest itself through different forms, depending
on the political context.

Moreover, we state that this debate
matters, because it permits to interpret the relevance of contemporary
political populism, as well as its success and its increasing use as a
political strategy.

     In
the essay, we will argue that political populism can be best understood as a
form of communication, because it is a political phenomenon that is
systematically located within political discourse.

In order to demonstrate our argument, we
will analyse different contemporary manifestations of political populism, by drawing
on theories of populism and study cases.

First, we will reflect over some political
ideologies and possible measurements of political populism. Then, we will widely
explore how the new media landscape has helped political populism to
contaminate the political system, and how this phenomenon helps us to
understand contemporary political populism. Finally, we will briefly analyse
what happens when populists access power, and how it helps us to understand
political populism.